STATUTE

STATUTE

OF THE ASSOCIATION “GREEK COUNCIL FOR REFUGEES”

 

ESTABLISHMENT - GOALS

Article 1

An Association is established under the name GREEK COUNCIL FOR REFUGEES in abbreviation GCR.

This name will be given in English as GREEK COUNCIL FOR REFUGEES in abbreviation GCR.

Article 2

The goal of the Association is the development of activities for refugees, as they are defined in the Geneva Convention of July 28th 1951 (ratified by Legislative Decree 3989/1959) and in the New York Protocol of January 31st 1967 (ratified by Law 389/1968), as well as persons in need of international protection in accordance with the international, EU and national legislation. In the above framework, the Association also develops activities for other categories of persons coming from third countries, emphasizing on vulnerable groups, such as unaccompanied minors, victims of human trafficking.

Article 3

The available means for the pursuit of the goals of the Association are:

Assistance to the association’s beneficiaries with the provision of advisory and other services aimed at ensuring their dignity, self-preservation, autonomy and the respect of their human rights, as well as their smooth integration into the Greek society, by referring them to appropriate services for the realization of special programs aiming at the resolution of their problems.

Raising awareness and educating the public with regard to these problems and the need to help GCR’s beneficiaries for a humanitarian treatment of these issues.

Cooperation with administrative authorities and services, with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, as well as with other institutions in a national or international framework, while attempting to ensure the necessary protection and aid in accordance with the modern broader understanding of the Convention of 1951 and the 1967 Protocol, as well as the international treaties referring to human rights.

The assumption of activities and programs of a humanitarian and developmental nature in developing countries and countries in transition.

In the pursuit of its goals the Association will be guided exclusively by the humanitarian principles mentioned in the above legal documents.

 

HEADQUARTERS-MEMBERS

Article 4

The headquarters of the Association are in the city of Athens. The Association can establish local branches elsewhere.

Adults who uphold humanitarian values and the values of GCR and who, in their application, state that they accept the goals of the Association and agree to uphold its Statute can become members of the Association. GCR encourages the enrolment of members who have been recognized as refugees. Each enrolment application must be supported by at least two Members of the Association. The Administrative Board decides upon the registration of members and it is required to decide no later than its third meeting following submission of the request. Decisions to reject an application can be challenged at the next Ordinary General Meeting.

Under the same terms mentioned above, members of the Association can also become employees of GCR.

Adults who uphold humanitarian values and the GCR principles and who in their application state that they accept the goals of the association and they agree to uphold its Statute can become "friends” of the association. The decision to register an individual as a “friend” of GCR is made by the Administrative Board (AB) within 3 months after submission of the relevant application. Potential decisions to reject applications by the AB can be challenged at the next General Meeting. The “friends” of the association possess all the rights and obligations of the members of the association, except for the right to vote, be elected and be counted for the achievement of a majority or a quorum in the bodies of the association, as mentioned in this Statute. The “friends” of the association pay a reduced annual fee which is calculated each calendar year, the sum of which is decided by the AB for the following year at the last meeting of each year. “Friends” of the association possessing this capacity for more than four months can request to become association members based on the provisions of paragraph 1 of this Article.

Article 5

The Members are obliged to contribute to the pursuit of the above goals, to uphold the Statute, to fulfil their financial obligations and to help in the smooth operation of the Association while safeguarding its goals and character.

The financial fees of the members are payable at the time of the member’s registration. The day the financial fees are paid is considered the date of enrolment. Fees are due each calendar year. The member is required to pay his or her fees after the end of the calendar year during which they had paid the previous fees.  In any case, fees may be paid before commencement of the Annual General Meeting.

Article 6

Members in good standing have the right to participate in the General Meeting, to discuss all issues that are presented in it, to vote, to elect and be elected, provided that 21 days have already passed since their enrolment.

In the elections for a new Administrative Board each member votes in person. Exceptionally, a member who is not in Athens or has a serious problem is allowed to vote by authorizing another member. No member can have more than two authorizations.

Article 7

Members who owe their membership fees for over two years or whose behaviour is contrary to the goals of the Association or their obligations according to the Statute are dismissed by a decision of the Administrative Board, submitted for approval at the next General meeting. Until the approval of the General Meeting, the decision of the Administrative Board is in effect and the dismissed member is obligated to abstain from any GCR related activity.

Members who are prosecuted during their term are placed on probation and are obliged to abstain from any GCR related activity until their full dismissal.

 

FUNDS OF THE ASSOCIATION

Article 8

Regular funds are: a) the contributions of Regular members during their enrolment b) their membership fees and c) any income from property of the Association.

Special funds are income from donations, grants, special contributions and fees, the price of publications sold and any other lawful funds (such as participation in any funding programs).

 

ADMINISTRATIVE BOARD

Article 9

The Association is governed by an Administrative Board consisting of seven members who are elected for a two-year term by secret ballot at the General Meeting. The outgoing President has to convene the new Administrative Board within the next 10 days, so that a President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer may be elected among its members. In case of this obligation being omitted by the outgoing President, the Board is convened by the Member elected by the largest majority of votes.

The new Administrative Board assumes management from the outgoing Administrative Board (AB).

Family members of members of the AB do not have the right to have any paid relationship with GCR for ethical reasons.

The AB can function with a smaller number of members if members who cannot meet their duties resign or there is not a sufficient number of candidates to fill the seven positions. The minimum number of members can not be less than five.

Article 10

The Administrative Board meets regularly on a monthly basis and whenever a special meeting is convened by the President or at least four of its members have requested it and is in quorum when four of its members are present.

If, during the term of the Administrative Board a Member’s position is vacated, subject to the provisions of the final paragraph of Article 9, the latter is filled by the first runner-up in the election and if a second or third position is vacated it is filled by the second and third runner-up respectively. Following the exhaustion of the three runners-up and in case another Member’s seat is vacated, the remaining members of the Administrative Board elect a new Member whose nomination is presented for approval by the General meeting of the Association. If this nomination is not approved by the Meeting, the Meeting elects a new Member for the remainder of the term of the Administrative Board, however, the actions of the non-approved Member remain valid until the General meeting.

Members of the Administrative Board who systematically abstain from consecutive meetings and who are not forced to do so for reasons beyond their control, lose their position as members of the Administrative Board, provided the issue is presented by a member of the Administrative Board and a majority of its members agree.

Article 11

The Administrative Board decides on any issue related to the goals of the Association, hires and terminates personnel, manages the property with the reservation of article 16, and executes the decisions of the General meeting. Decisions are made by a majority of the present members.

The Administrative Board designates as it sees fit people who have contributed to the aims of the Association in any way as Honorary Members, Donors or Benefactors.

The Administrative Board defines the minimum contribution upon registration as well as the minimum membership fees for GCR members.

In order to ensure the Association’s smoother operation, the Administrative Board may decide to assign certain competencies, which it will further determine, to a three-member Executive Committee composed of the President or the Vice President, the Secretary, and the Treasurer.

The Administrative Board may also delegate extra responsibilities to each of its members individually and/or may assign the supervision of each one of GCR’s divisions to each member. The members who undertake the above task collaborate closely with the management and coordinators of the GCR divisions with the aim of monitoring the issues within their responsibility and implementing the Administrative Board’s relevant decisions.

Article 12

The President of the Administrative Board represents the Association before any authorities, presides over the meetings of the Administrative Board and has the responsibility of executing the decisions of the Administrative Board, when this has not been assigned to another body of the Association. In case of absence or inability, the president is replaced by the Vice President in any instance. The Secretary is responsible for keeping the Members’ register and records, drafting the documents and minutes of the Administrative Board as well as of the Executive Committee. The Treasurer keeps the financial records and oversees the financial management of the Association.

Article 13

The Administrative Board can delegate representation of the Association to other people, defining the content of this authorization in each decision.

 

AUDIT COMMITTEE

Article 14

Along with the election of every new Administrative Board a three-member Audit Committee is also elected, whose term lasts as long as the Administrative Board’s and which has control of the financial management of the Association. If the position of a member of the Audit Committee is vacated it is filled by the first runner-up in the Audit Committee election and if there are no runner-ups, a replacement is elected by the remaining members of the Audit Committee whose election is presented for ratification at the next General meeting. If this election is not approved, the General meeting elects a new member of the Audit Committee for the remainder of the term, but the actions of the interim replacement remain valid.

 

GENERAL MEETING

Article 15

The General Meeting is convened regularly on an annual basis within the first four months of the calendar year, following a written invitation from the President and Secretary of the Administrative Board, at least twenty days earlier, stating the location, day, time and agenda.  It is also convened in exceptional cases when it is deemed necessary by the Administrative Board or requested in writing by half of the Regular Members in good standing. In the last case, the first items on the agenda of the General Meeting should be those that led to the request for convening. The General meeting is in quorum when more than half of the Members with voting rights are present. If there is no quorum at the set time and day, the Meeting is reconvened one hour later, at which time it is considered to be in quorum irrespectively of the number of people present. The decisions are made by an absolute majority of those present. Before the consideration of the agenda, a President and Secretary of the Meeting are elected.

Article 16

The General Meeting is ultimately responsible and decides on any issues concerning the Association. The annual budget of the Association is discussed and voted on at a General meeting, which is convened within the last three months of the previous year.  The Regular General meeting approves the review and the budget of regular income and expenses. It sets the lower limit for Members’ contributions when they are enrolled as well as their annual fees. It exempts or holds the Administrative Board liable. It elects the Administrative Board and the Audit Committee every two years in accordance with the provisions laid out above. The General Meeting decides about the possible disposal of the Association’s property, as well as any other issue provided for in the Statute.

Article 17

The Statute of the Association can be amended by the General Meeting by a ¾ majority of those present and for the amendment of its scope by a ¾ majority of all Members in good standing.

Article 18

The Association is dissolved in the cases defined by law, or with a decision of the General meeting by a 4/5 majority of all Members in good standing. Following the dissolution of the Association, its property will come to another legal entity with similar goals, in accordance with a decision made by the General Meeting by an absolute majority of those present, immediately after its decision for the dissolution of the Association.

 

TRANSITIONAL PROVISIONS

Article 19

The present statute, comprising 19 articles, following amendments, and as consolidated above, was read article by article and approved today by the Regular General Meeting, which was convened for this purpose. It will apply, as amended, following the registration of the amendments in the associations registry kept with the Athens Court of First Instance.

The seven-member Administrative Board, provided for in article 9, will take effect immediately following the end of the term of the current eleven-member Administrative Board, following the planned elections that will take place at the General Meeting.

 

Initial Statute date, January 21st 1989

 

Athens, May 30th 2016

 

For the Administrative Board

 

The President                               The Secretary

Anna-Theodora Papadimitriou-              Konstantina Christopoulou
Tsatsou                                                      

 

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